By Tison Pugh
Geoffrey Chaucer is commonly thought of the daddy of English literature. This creation starts with a assessment of his existence and the cultural milieu of fourteenth-century England after which expands into analyses of such significant works because the Parliament of Fowls, Troilus and Criseyde , and, in fact, the Canterbury stories , analyzing them along a range of lesser recognized verses. one of many early hurdles confronted by means of scholars of Chaucer is reaching ease and fluency with center English, yet Tison Pugh offers a transparent and concise pronunciation consultant and a thesaurus to aid beginner readers navigate Chaucer's literature in its unique language. extra serious equipment, together with a survey of the writer's resources and short summaries of significant plot traces, make An creation to Geoffrey Chaucer an integral source for college kids, academics, and a person who has ever desired to research extra approximately this important determine of English literature.
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Additional info for An Introduction to Geoffrey Chaucer
With this plotline in danger of devolving into the formulaic, Chaucer hints that he is growing weary of these tales: But, for I am agroted [have had my fill] herebyforn To wryte of hem that ben in love forsworn, And ek to haste me in my legende, (Which to performe God me grace sende) Therfore I passe shortly in this wyse. (2454–58) Indeed, acting almost as inappropriately as his character Pandarus in Troilus and Criseyde, Chaucer appears to flirt with the female members of his audience when he reports Phyllis’s suicide: She for dispeyr [despair] fordide [killed] hyreself, allas.
He insufficiently compliments the Man in Black’s beloved when he suggests the barest possibility that his interlocutor could find a more exceptional beloved: “Hardely, your love was wel beset; / I not how ye myghte have do bet [done better]” (1043–44), to which the Man in Black responds testily, “Bet? ] Ne no wyght so wel” (1045). Here readers see the implausible naiveté of dream-vision narrators, who must be repeatedly corrected in their erroneous assumptions. In this case, Chaucer learns that he misunderstands love through the Man in Black’s instructive suffering, but it is odd that Chaucer confronts this lesson in his dream because the initial descriptions of his lovesickness indicate his personal experience with and understanding of such pains.
Despite these missing wives, Chaucer’s Legend of Good Women intriguingly exposes the gendered dynamics of mythic literature and its influence on his conception of himself as a writer of the fourteenth century. This collection of legendary materials presents womanly virtue as dependent upon suffering, betrayal, and passivity, as it concomitantly portrays masculine misconduct in amatory affairs. Regrettably, since Legend of Good Women lacks the expected ending of a dream vision—which here would likely see Chaucer returning to Cupid and Alceste’s court, or at least waking and pondering the meaning of his dream—it is difficult to draw conclusions about Chaucer’s personal stance in his treatment of these many good women.
An Introduction to Geoffrey Chaucer by Tison Pugh